We left Pouilley-en-Auxois, at the top of Canal de Bourgogne, through the tunnel to the top of the downhill side.

Electric tug

This old electric tug, now an exhibition piece at Pouilley-en-Auxois, used to tow barges through the tunnel at the top of the Canal de Bourgogne. It pulled itself along the heavy chain laid in the canal, and was powered from an overhead electric wire connected via the slender masts, much like a old Melbourne tram’s connector.

Wood for tunnel

We prepared the barge for the tunnel by mounting wooden poles outboard to keep us off the tunnel walls; these sturdy planks at the bow were somewhat splintered by the end of the tunnel transit.

Looking back to the tunnel entrance

Here we are a few hundred metres into the tunnel; looking back the entrance is still apparent. Only about 3km to go!

Into the tunnel

We ‘re into the tunnel, and the line of lights stretches into the distance – it’s impossible to judge how far away the end is.

Barge clearance in the tunnel

There’s not much clearance in the tunnel – less than a metre either side if we happened to be in the middle! Overhead, at the edge of our canopy, was about half a metre. Standing on deck I could easily touch the walls and most of the roof.

Light at the end of the tunnel

Light at the end of the tunnel!

Finally out of the tunnel, but no rest for the wicked …

Chateauneuf up the hill

Chateauneuf – one of the largest, and most imposing on the landscape in the Bourgogne region. We would have liked to visit here, but needed to do so from Vandensee, where the eclusiers told us there was too much traffic, including several large hotel-barges, for us to stay.

Chateau Chateauneuf

The castle and church of Chateauneuf.

… and on to Pont d’Ouche, where I declared it to be a holiday for my birthday, so we had a much appreciated lay-day.

Pont d'Ouche

The port at Pont d’Ouche. We were moored on the left bank, so had a short stroll across the bridge to get to the village centre.

Prosperite at Pont d'Ouche

These hotel-barges can only just fit through the narrow bridges and the locks. Their captains have excellent skills at driving them along the canals without touching anything!

We all had a lovely long lunch at the Bistrot du Port, but only Carmel & I made it to dinner; I enjoyed mine, particularly the cheese fondue sauce for the chips …

Birthday dinner 20150622_191801